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Updated: 27 min 26 sec ago

#MemorialDay2020: In the States Roundup

Fri, 05/29/2020 - 10:51
#MemorialDay2020: In the States Roundup AFL-CIO

It's time once again to take a look at the ways working people are making progress in the states. Click on any of the links to follow the state federations on Twitter.

California Labor Federation:

Instead of providing drivers with a livable wage & the basic protections that all workers deserve during this crisis, @Uber @Lyft & @Doordash are spending $110 million on a deceptive ballot measure. Join us in stepping up for gig workers! https://t.co/Co45JR8DUo #SickofGigGreed

— California Labor Federation (@CaliforniaLabor) May 28, 2020

Colorado AFL-CIO:

Join us June 3 to tell Cory Gardner puts Colorado workers first! We are demanding Senator Cory Gardner join our working family champions to pass meaningful measures based on compassion, science, dignity and common sense.https://t.co/04We21GZSs#copolitics #coleg

— Colorado AFL-CIO (@AFLCIOCO) May 28, 2020

Connecticut AFL-CIO:

We honor the brave men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice. #MemorialDay pic.twitter.com/Q9YBux1Fy5

— Connecticut AFL-CIO (@ConnAFLCIO) May 25, 2020

Florida AFL-CIO:

Registered nurses at HCA hospitals across Florida are standing up for better safety on the job and against the profit-driven layoffs of workers on the frontlines of this pandemic. https://t.co/HRr4OuoJkq

— Florida AFL-CIO (@FLAFLCIO) May 28, 2020

Georgia State AFL-CIO:

We believe in the importance of access to health care, and so does our endorsed candidate, @AuforGA! We believe she would bring much-needed wisdom, skills, and a commitment to good policy to the Capitol. #gapol #1u #gaaflcio pic.twitter.com/vDoozQrnrE

— Georgia AFL-CIO (@AFLCIOGeorgia) May 26, 2020

Indiana State AFL-CIO:

Feel free to slide into our DMs or email us at inaflcio@inaflcio.org https://t.co/9rYXYo8GS5

— Indiana AFL-CIO (@INAFLCIO) May 28, 2020

Iowa Federation of Labor:

Support these union endorsed candidates pic.twitter.com/eEkk9N9W5y

— Iowa AFL-CIO (@IowaAFLCIO) May 27, 2020

Maine AFL-CIO:

Check out the latest Maine Labor News! https://t.co/VNlPQ1oEhJ #mepolitics #UnionStrong #COVID19 @IAMLLS6

— Maine AFL-CIO (@MEAFLCIO) May 22, 2020

Massachusetts AFL-CIO:

Op-ed by President @StevenATolman and Steve Striffler: https://t.co/Max04VyThP #1u #solidarity #mapoli

— Massachusetts AFL-CIO (@massaflcio) May 21, 2020

Michigan State AFL-CIO:

NEWS: @MIAFLCIO Endorsed Candidates for Statewide Education Boards Will Build A Better Michigan for All of Us https://t.co/vdY2b5Cgrx pic.twitter.com/o6D9TJDTit

— Michigan AFL-CIO 🏠 (@MIAFLCIO) May 27, 2020

Minnesota AFL-CIO:

Remember, if you experience unsafe working conditions due to #COVID19, you can refuse work and report it to @Mndli at 651-284-5050. Under @GovTimWalz’s executive order, you are protected from retaliation. Message us if you have questions. #1u #StaySafeMN pic.twitter.com/1VBgRSanTb

— Minnesota AFL-CIO (@MNAFLCIO) May 18, 2020

Missouri AFL-CIO:

It is obvious that the leadership care about one thing and one thing only, and that is to prevent the people of Missouri from having a voice in the Capitol. #moleg https://t.co/w8yPkArqvf pic.twitter.com/ls6h5L454U

— Missouri AFL-CIO (@MOAFLCIO) May 26, 2020

Montana State AFL-CIO:

.@CooneyforMT has led the fight for conservation. #mtnews #mtpol #mtgovhttps://t.co/iCQxUdJYN1

— Montana AFL-CIO (@MTaflcio) May 27, 2020

New Jersey State AFL-CIO:

It’s time for Congress to put up the cash to replace our aging water pipes, union says https://t.co/mQC7oGEwAP

— New Jersey AFL-CIO (@NJAFLCIO) May 27, 2020

New Mexico Federation of Labor:

#MemorialDay2020 pic.twitter.com/Jl7CWeGhLh

— NMFL (@NMFLaflcio) May 25, 2020

New York State AFL-CIO:

A big #UnionStrong thank you to @dianesavino for supporting S8266 to ensure the workers carrying us through #COVID19ny get the care, wage replacement & death benefits they are entitled to if they get sick or die simply from doing their job. @NYSWorkersComp
is failing them. #1u pic.twitter.com/AsaYcsa1IE

— NYSAFLCIO (@NYSAFLCIO) May 25, 2020

North Carolina State AFL-CIO:

Data: Nearly 200 COVID-related complaints in NC received by OSHA since March https://t.co/iegA99l29j via @WNCN and @strikewave. @ncdol #covid19 #1u

— NC State AFL-CIO (@NCStateAFLCIO) May 28, 2020

Ohio AFL-CIO:

If you are in or near #Columbus June 3 and support the #HEROESAct, join us for the Central Ohio @AFLCIO #WorkersFirst Caravan. We will meet at the @UFCW Hall at 2PM. Click here to RSVP: https://t.co/UPNhkkOxiD

— Ohio AFL-CIO (@ohioaflcio) May 28, 2020

Oklahoma State AFL-CIO:

Happy Memorial Day to past, present and fallen soldiers. In honor of may, in memory of all. pic.twitter.com/eihJaSysIX

— Oklahoma AFL-CIO (@OK_AFL_CIO) May 25, 2020

Oregon AFL-CIO:

Another heartbreaking day in America. We stand in solidarity with the family, friends, and loved ones of #GeorgeFloyd, the Black community, and everyone demanding accountability and justice. We must do more. #SayTheirNames #blacklivesmatter pic.twitter.com/P6TuPgsTim

— Oregon AFL-CIO (@OregonAFLCIO) May 28, 2020

Pennsylvania AFL-CIO:

We are so proud of our PA unions for all the work they have done to serve the community. This is #solidarity. @AFLCIO @BCTGM https://t.co/T0kZSX8HSn

— PA AFL-CIO (@PaAFL_CIO) May 28, 2020

Rhode Island AFL-CIO:

Omni hotel workers to lose subsidized health care #1u@UNITEHERE26https://t.co/umSoMbzniF

— Rhode Island AFL-CIO (@riaflcio) May 23, 2020

Tennessee AFL-CIO Labor Council:

Mark your calendars! In less than a week, working families across Tennessee will join thousands of people throughout the country in a Workers First Caravan, an all-out action of national solidarity on June 3rd calling for implementation of America’s Five Economic Essentials. pic.twitter.com/TvhqdktGY1

— Tennessee AFL-CIO (@tnaflcio) May 28, 2020

Texas AFL-CIO:

Working people from Austin, Ft. Worth, Houston, and El Paso will join thousands across the country in a Workers Caravan, an all-out action of national solidarity calling for passage of the HEROES Act.

Staging location/route details coming soon! pic.twitter.com/rIcAZhelcM

— Texas AFL-CIO (@TexasAFLCIO) May 26, 2020

Virginia AFL-CIO:

We weighed in on this... https://t.co/yb8dBMYetT

— Virginia AFL-CIO (@Virginia_AFLCIO) May 28, 2020

Washington State Labor Council:

We support you, @STdigitalunion!#OneNewsroomOneUnion @seattletimes https://t.co/3OtOYMqOBM

— WA State AFL-CIO (@WAAFLCIO) May 27, 2020

Wisconsin State AFL-CIO:

Post offices, beloved community hubs fight virus-era threats, https://t.co/sdMjsOVhiz @APWUnational @NALC_National @usmailnot4sale

— WI AFL-CIO (@wisaflcio) May 28, 2020 Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 05/29/2020 - 11:51

Labor Radio–Podcast Weekly: Immigrant Solidarity, Oral History and More

Thu, 05/28/2020 - 12:25
Labor Radio–Podcast Weekly: Immigrant Solidarity, Oral History and More Labor Radio-Podcast Weekly

The latest episode of the "Labor Radio–Podcast Weekly" features immigrant solidarity, oral history and more. This week’s highlights from labor radio and podcast shows focusing on working people include:

“You know, I'm not just the epithet that they give me, we shape history every day and collective actions here could shape history in a new way,” Cristobal Cavazos of Immigrant Solidarity DuPage on "Labor Express Radio," Chicago's only English-language labor news and current affairs radio program.

“My Pietro. He worked in the sheds for 15 years. Always he was not satisfied. Always, he said someday he would find other work. But no other work he found.” That’s from the latest episode of "En Masse," where interdisciplinary artist, labor activist and political educator Liz Medina brings together oral histories and social theory with stories of struggle and hope from the working class.

In addition, sisters, who are members of the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers (SMART), share their stories; "Workers Beat Radio" votes by mail; "UCOMM Live" reports on unemployment claims in New Jersey; and "Labor History in 2" discusses Chicago’s first teachers’ strike.

Check out all the shows on Labor Radio/Podcast Network.

Kenneth Quinnell Thu, 05/28/2020 - 13:25

Tags: Podcast

Save the News: Meet Andy Nguyen

Thu, 05/28/2020 - 10:18
Save the News: Meet Andy Nguyen

The NewsGuild-CWA member Andy Nguyen didn’t think he was going to lose his job when he received the email for the “all-staff” meeting. But that is exactly what happened. Dozens of journalists got laid off, including him, because of the financial effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Learn more about how journalists and the whole journalism industry are being affected during these dangerous times.

Kenneth Quinnell Thu, 05/28/2020 - 11:18

Chinese American UNITE HERE Member Shares Her COVID-19 Story

Tue, 05/26/2020 - 09:55
Chinese American UNITE HERE Member Shares Her COVID-19 Story

This week we are lifting up Andee Huang, a laid-off Chinese American hotel worker from Boston and a member of UNITE HERE Local 26. She'd been working at the Westin Boston Waterfront for 13 years. Ever since she and all her co-workers lost their jobs in March, Huang has been helping other workers apply for unemployment, food assistance and other needs. 

Huang says: "We need to stand up and fight until we win." That’s why we are fighting for major changes that will bring us through COVID-19 as safe as possible and build strong and prepared communities for the future.

Join us to support the Paycheck Guarantee Act to end mass unemployment and return millions of workers back to payroll and health care.  

Join us to protect essential workers.

Kenneth Quinnell Tue, 05/26/2020 - 10:55

Tags: COVID-19, Community Service

Service + Solidarity: Meet Jennifer Cody

Fri, 05/22/2020 - 09:53
Service + Solidarity: Meet Jennifer Cody

Jennifer Cody is an actress from New York and a member of the Actors' Equity. Her industry is 100% unemployed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and Broadway is closed for the indefinite future. Learn more about how dancers, singers and the rest of her community are affected during these dangerous times.

Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 05/22/2020 - 10:53

Tags: COVID-19

Maine AFL-CIO Is Using All the Digital Tools in Its Toolbox to Help Workers

Fri, 05/22/2020 - 09:25
Maine AFL-CIO Is Using All the Digital Tools in Its Toolbox to Help Workers Maine AFL-CIO

With unprecedented numbers of Mainers out of work due to the coronavirus pandemic, the state’s labor movement is deploying digital tools in innovative ways to help workers who are being impacted by COVID-19. The Maine AFL-CIO is using a full range of online platforms to support those who are applying for unemployment insurance (UI) and pressure policymakers to fix the system.

Like many states, Maine’s UI system was unprepared for the crisis and has been overwhelmed by the volume of claims. President Cynthia Phinney (IBEW) of the Maine AFL-CIO explained: “After eight years with an anti-worker governor, there are so many hurdles that people have to jump through to access the benefits that they’re entitled to. The system was designed to prevent people from getting even a single dollar if they’re not supposed to, rather than have as its top priority helping workers who are unemployed.”

The state federation is responding to this challenge by using all the digital tools in its toolbox. There is a new page on its website devoted to providing UI assistance, including a form for workers to ask questions and request help. The form includes a spot for workers to fill in their union affiliation so the state federation can refer them to trained organizers and activists from their own union who can help. “If a person can be connected with someone from their union, all the better,” Phinney said.

In addition, the Maine AFL-CIO created a Facebook group where people can ask questions, talk about common problems and learn how to overcome them. More than 1,000 Facebook users have joined. “It’s developed beautifully because people who are part of the group are answering questions for other people and sharing their experiences,” Phinney said.

“We trained a lot of people to help unemployed workers fill out their UI forms. They’re helping workers get their claims approved so they can avoid a dragged-out process,” Phinney said. The state federation worked with Maine Equal Justice and the state's Department of Labor to host a webinar on changes to the UI system to accommodate workers impacted by the pandemic.

And Maine’s labor movement is helping more than just union members; unrepresented workers are being assisted as well. The state federation has helped about 3,000 individuals seeking UI assistance. “Many of them are just so grateful to have found somewhere where someone will answer their questions,” Phinney explained. She said that for many unrepresented workers looking for help with their UI application, this is their first contact with a labor union organization.

The state federation also has launched a direct email campaign to pressure lawmakers to improve the system and has hosted online meetings with Maine’s congressional delegation focused on promoting America’s Five Economic Essentials. They also hold Zoom press conferences that are well-attended by reporters to get the word out about a range of issues, including the state’s UI system and the need for more personal protective equipment for front-line workers.

“This is a moment when people across the country are seeing workers as we have always seen workers: essential,” Phinney said. “Tell your stories and help other workers to get their stories out, because those stories are what bring us together and start us on the road to becoming stronger.”

Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 05/22/2020 - 10:25

Tags: COVID-19

Service + Solidarity Spotlight: Mine Workers Stand with Navajo People

Fri, 05/22/2020 - 07:36
Service + Solidarity Spotlight: Mine Workers Stand with Navajo People AFL-CIO

During the COVID-19 pandemic, working people across the United States have stepped up to help out their friends, neighbors and communities. In our new Service + Solidarity Spotlight series, we'll showcase one of those stories every day. Here's today's story.

Mine Workers (UMWA) President Cecil Roberts:

The coronavirus pandemic that has struck the United States has brought death and economic devastation in multiple regions, but none more so than the Navajo Nation, which has surpassed New York City as the region with the most COVID-19 cases per capita in America. We represent many thousands of Navajo workers, and our prayers are with those who have lost family members and those who are still struggling with this disease.

It is very troubling that critical federal support and supplies that were intended to go to the Navajo Nation were delayed or misdirected. The federal government has a special responsibility to provide support to Native American nations, many of which already suffered from chronic public health issues long before this virus showed up. Simply put, our government failed them.

For many Navajo families, this could not come at a worse time. With the needless and premature closure of the Navajo Generating Station (NGS) at the end of last year, hundreds of workers at that plant and the Kayenta coal mine that fed the NGS were thrown out of work. They were already suffering, and now many have lost family members or are caring for severely sick relatives, while trying to keep the virus from spreading even further in their families.

The loss of revenue to the Navajo Nation government from the NGS and Kayenta closures already had a severe impact on the resources it has available to provide for its people before the virus hit. Now, the situation is desperate. I call on the United States government to rapidly increase the level of assistance that is going to the Navajo Nation and all tribal governments.

This disease is especially strong in those communities which already had health issues and a history of poor access to health care facilities, which is true in most rural areas of the country. As we bring more resources to bear to fight this virus throughout the country, we cannot continue to leave rural America behind.

If you know of other stories that we should include in this series, please e-mail them to kquinnell@aflcio.org.

Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 05/22/2020 - 08:36

Tags: COVID-19

Labor Radio–Podcast Weekly: Essential Workers Bill of Rights, Kooper Caraway and More

Tue, 05/19/2020 - 11:41
Labor Radio–Podcast Weekly: Essential Workers Bill of Rights, Kooper Caraway and More Labor Radio-Podcast Weekly

The latest episode of the Labor Radio-Podcast Weekly features an Essential Workers Bill of Rights, Kooper Caraway and more. This week’s highlights include:

Belabored: Sarah Jaffe and Michelle Chen report on school employees in Minnesota fighting for safety on the job and an attempt to pass an Essential Workers Bill of Rights in New York City.

Stronger Together: The SEIU Local 503 podcast, where the latest episode focuses on the upcoming Oregon primary, which has both union members and strong union supporters running for office.

Workers Beat Radio: Host Gene Lantz talks with Sioux Falls Central Labor Council President Kooper Caraway, one of the youngest, most hopeful and most outspoken labor leaders in the country.

Labor History in 2:00: Brown v. Board of Education, the day the Supreme Court outlawed racial segregation in public education.

Check out all the Labor Radio/Podcast Network shows.

Kenneth Quinnell Tue, 05/19/2020 - 12:41

Tags: Podcast

Why Domestic Workers Like Nicanora Montenegro Should Be Considered Essential Workers

Tue, 05/19/2020 - 08:56
Why Domestic Workers Like Nicanora Montenegro Should Be Considered Essential Workers

Nicanora Montenegro is a Filipina American in-home support services (IHSS) provider in San Diego and the district chair of United Domestic Workers of America (UDW)-AFSCME Local 3930. As an IHSS provider, she takes care of the most vulnerable folks in our community who are also the most at risk of COVID-19. 

This pandemic has illustrated just how essential the often invisible and undervalued work that caregivers, like Montenegro, provide. Without them, front-line workers who are parents or have other family responsibilities wouldn’t be able to go to work, and older adults, people with disabilities and people with chronic illnesses would not be able to shelter in place. 

Montenegro and her union have been fighting for the rights and respect that home care workers deserve like better wages, access to health care, paid sick days and more. It's well past time that we all recognize domestic workers as essential workers.

Join our calls to Congress to ensure ALL essential workers have the protections they need, the rights they are entitled to and the compensation they deserve in the next COVID-19 package. 

Join us to protect essential workers.

Kenneth Quinnell Tue, 05/19/2020 - 09:56

Tags: COVID-19, APALA

Fix Unemployment Programs: What Working People Are Doing This Week

Fri, 05/15/2020 - 12:02
Fix Unemployment Programs: What Working People Are Doing This Week AFL-CIO

Welcome to our regular feature, a look at what the various AFL-CIO unions and other working family organizations are doing across the country and beyond. The labor movement is big and active—here's a look at the broad range of activities we're engaged in this week.

Actors' Equity:

We are proud to do our part in support of the actors & stage managers out of work due to COVID-19, and have established the #CurtainUpFund. We hope that anyone who is able to support @TheActorsFund's vital social services and financial aid will join us - https://t.co/dbAvIoWxUM pic.twitter.com/XQMlnK1zxR

— Actors' Equity (@ActorsEquity) May 17, 2020

AFGE:

Not many people would trade jobs with those who have to keep watch over inmates in federal prisons. Now that job has become more dangerous as #COVID19 has spread in the prisons’ close quarters. #1u https://t.co/X7ZKgLGF3D

— AFGE (@AFGENational) May 15, 2020

AFSCME:

National EMS Week is the perfect time to thank EMS professionals for everything they do. The job has always been demanding but in the face of the pandemic, w/o proper support or PPE, they continue to put our communities first. Please add your thanks to the comments. #EMSWeek pic.twitter.com/C5BacumpAH

— AFSCME (@AFSCME) May 18, 2020

Air Line Pilots Association:

The 100K #pilots of @WeAreALPA @AlliedPilots @CAPApilots @ipapilots agree: the return of the airline industry & responsible use of taxpayer #CARESAct funds all depend on mandating @CDCgov & @FAANews guidelines—it’s what the flying public deserves. https://t.co/XqFW1HUnaA

— ALPA (@WeAreALPA) May 16, 2020

Alliance for Retired Americans:

This is a dangerous and unnecessary threat to our retirement security. Americans shouldn't have to choose between the relief they need now and the earned benefits they will need in the future. #FalseChoice #NoCutstoSocialSecurity https://t.co/FdKLtjKm0Z

— Alliance Retirees (@ActiveRetirees) May 11, 2020

Amalgamated Transit Union:

Frontline #transit workers are keeping the U.S. and Canada moving during this global pandemic crisis. Please take action for #SafeServiceNow for transit workers now at https://t.co/rXtqMfXNqA #1u #publictransit #COVID19

— ATU, Transit Union (@ATUComm) May 15, 2020

American Federation of Musicians:

#UnionMusicians are fighting to fix unemployment programs to better meet the needs of musicians who often work gig to gig,https://t.co/OlczZVh7EZ https://t.co/QVtCVDFfJY

— AFM (@The_AFM) May 15, 2020

American Federation of Teachers:

"With these capstone projects in hand, teachers can hope to engage each and every one of their kids before school breaks for the summer—and beyond.” - @rweingarten about our new #CulminatingCapstone projects with @sharemylesson @GetZigazoo @storycorps https://t.co/tK0SKKhGsT pic.twitter.com/IbvYi9b1iu

— AFT (@AFTunion) May 12, 2020

American Postal Workers Union:

“There is a big, bold movement taking place across rural and urban American to make sure postal funding is included in the next stimulus.” #SaveThePostOffice #SaveTheUSPS https://t.co/QUVAisHKnq

— APWU National (@APWUnational) May 16, 2020

Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance:

Happy #APAHM and #NursesWeek!

Marina is a Chuukese registered nurse in Honolulu working in the OBGYN Department. She is proud to bring the idea of aterenges, or family, into her care work. She keeps pregnant people and their families safe during COVID-19. pic.twitter.com/2WTkzFlOWO

— Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance, AFL-CIO (@APALAnational) May 11, 2020

Association of Flight Attendants-CWA:

May is Asian Pacific American American Heritage Month! AFA celebrates Asian American and Pacific Islander Flight Attendants and aviation workers. #APAHM pic.twitter.com/253mX9R4Nn

— AFA-CWA (@afa_cwa) May 18, 2020

Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers:

Local 280G member Daniel Pierce arrives for his essential shift at Western Sugar with all the proper gear. 😷 He and co-workers produce granulated sugar for the western states.

THANK YOU, Brother, stay safe!#bctgmstrong #covid_19 #1u #coronavirususa #unionyes pic.twitter.com/GRvVI8iQxt

— BCTGM International (@BCTGM) May 15, 2020

Boilermakers:

Quick #Boilermaker action, calm heads, teamwork and training save the day--and a life. Read more ➡️ https://t.co/JgJtMLBoc9 pic.twitter.com/YebDoPlK4x

— Boilermakers Union (@boilermakernews) May 13, 2020

Bricklayers:

What will schools look like after COVID-19? We're fighting to #RebuildAmericasSchools so children don't have to return to school buildings with mold, rotting floors, leaky ceilings, and inadequate heating and air conditioning. pic.twitter.com/zfzkNFl0gc

— Bricklayers Union (@IUBAC) May 15, 2020

Coalition of Black Trade Unionists:

Once upon a time, before an election catastrophe, a dream came true. A future president who would make history when he reached the White House paid a visit to CBTU. Tonight, President @BarackObama sprinkled some of his magic on the quarantined Class of 2020. #GraduateTogether pic.twitter.com/28ulqCAh5h

— CBTU (@CBTU72) May 17, 2020

Coalition of Labor Union Women:

"During every recession since 1981, men had greater unemployment rates than women; however, women accounted for 55% of the job losses of April 2020. Women are more negatively affected in the COVID-19 economy."
Sign this petition to demand more relief: https://t.co/I4CZC82tuF pic.twitter.com/VmAyw4yZw7

— CLUW National (@CLUWNational) May 15, 2020

Communications Workers of America:

The COVID-19 pandemic has made something clear that CWA members have known for a long time: millions of families in the United States do not have access to affordable, reliable broadband internet connections.https://t.co/qgQHTAS2cv

— CWA (@CWAUnion) May 16, 2020

Department for Professional Employees:

"Outsourcing the critical technology functions of a federally owned public utility to an overseas firm was always a bad idea." #1u https://t.co/8CVxhaO5n5

— Department for Professional Employees (@DPEaflcio) May 17, 2020

Electrical Workers:

New Jersey #IBEW steps up to help protect health care workers. https://t.co/WpoNNyg8LI

— IBEW (@IBEW) May 14, 2020

Fire Fighters:

SAFR Act Provides Federal Benefits for COVID-19 Death or Disability https://t.co/dbyMkuOd8b

— IAFF (@IAFFNewsDesk) May 18, 2020

Heat and Frost Insulators:

Happy Monday! Please, Brothers and Sisters, continue to work safe.
📷: Local 5 Mechanic Richard Slocum pic.twitter.com/8yD0F5kMbN

— Insulators Union (@InsulatorsUnion) May 18, 2020

International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers:

On this historic day, we celebrate the creation of the great American institution that is the TVA. We call on everyone to join our fight to stop privatization and outsourcing, and protect good jobs at the TVA!! #1u https://t.co/02kd1hVCyg

— IFPTE (@IFPTE) May 18, 2020

Ironworkers:

IMPACT is hosting a webinar to bring you important information on the post-pandemic U.S. economy. Don't miss this chance to ask questions from a renowned economist! Click on the registration button on the flyer to register! #COVID19 #covid19response https://t.co/5E0ysPJeqI

— Ironworkers. (@TheIronworkers) May 18, 2020

Jobs With Justice:

Annnnnnnd THAT'S A WRAP! We officially finished our first-ever virtual conference!

We may have a lot of fights against Big Tech -- but that doesn't mean we're not tech savvy, y'all 😬

Some #JWJ2020 Conference highlights in the thread below 👇 pic.twitter.com/psr1yR5SAY

— Jobs With Justice (@jwjnational) May 15, 2020

Labor Council for Latin American Advancement:

How do we protect our family’s oldest members? How do we keep everyone at home safe, what has this battle against COVID-19 looked like from the frontlines? All this and more today! Register now! #Protectingourlovedoneshttps://t.co/7jVkqmYsUC pic.twitter.com/ok6mhcArRG

— LCLAA (@LCLAA) May 18, 2020

Laborers:

#LIUNA in the news: Construction industry could come back quickly but faces longterm challenges #InItTogether #COVID19 https://t.co/Fpa8duHCNq

— LIUNA (@LIUNA) May 18, 2020

Longshoremen:

@ILAUnion @TheILAmobileApp ILA Cancels Annual Fund Raising Tournament That Aides @holewallcamp Children. Union and Industry Partners, led by @usmxalliance_ have raised over $5 million for camp since 1992 #ILA & #USMX will try to make substantial 2020 donation without tournament. pic.twitter.com/xJemMCOxak

— Int'l LongshoreAssoc (@ILAUnion) May 18, 2020

Machinists:

Here’s a great story about how @IAM751 members are stepping up to tackle the #COVID19 crisis https://t.co/Hjjqiufus8

— Machinists Union ✈️🚊🚀 (@MachinistsUnion) May 16, 2020

Metal Trades Department:

MTD Joins New Coalition Focused on Creating Jobs and Infrastructure Projects at U.S. DOE Facilities | Metal Trades Department, AFL-CIO https://t.co/xjLYmJ06Df

— Metal Trades Dept. (@metaltradesafl) May 15, 2020

Mine Workers:

President @CecilRoberts' editorial on how the U.S. Postal Service is a lifeline for rural West Virginia.https://t.co/bWKSRcyh1V

— United Mine Workers (@MineWorkers) May 10, 2020

Musical Artists:

Did you know May is #MentalHealthMonth? This is FREE webinar series on mental health for dancers created by the International Association of Dance Medicine and Science (@IADMS). https://t.co/Sr0e1FddkC

— AGMA (@AGMusicalArtist) May 15, 2020

National Air Traffic Controllers Association:

NATCA members across the country continued their efforts to support other essential workers in their communities. ZTL members’ recent efforts to support local restaurants and COVID-19 front line workers received coverage in the Henry County Times. https://t.co/vnXy2VRZp7

— NATCA (@NATCA) May 18, 2020

National Association of Letter Carriers:

Members of Austin, MN Branch 717 donated to @SalvationArmyUS! Letter carrier Ryan Bell presented a check of $2,000 to The Salvation Army Major Jeff Strickler. The money donated will go toward stocking food shelves.https://t.co/0T1w7dkoY0 #PostalProud #1u #StampOutHunger

— Letter Carriers (@NALC_National) May 18, 2020

National Day Laborer Organizing Network:

A beautiful caravan on a beautiful day for acts of compassion, and to defy the greed and racism that would have us exclude our own neighbors and #essentialworkers from protections! #ProtectAllWorkers#YNosotrosQue https://t.co/80yMAaRMJS

— NDLON (@NDLON) May 16, 2020

National Domestic Workers Alliance:

"While the next business trip can wait, the next feeding of a 6-month-old cannot... This essential work is at the core of our economy, yet our economy systematically ignores it.”https://t.co/Ur21bBi2TY

— Domestic Workers (@domesticworkers) May 17, 2020

National Federation of Federal Employees:

Here's an opportunity to get involved and help federal employees on the frontlines of the Coronavirus pandemic. Contact your Senators today! #HEROESact https://t.co/V0hmI2sqRR

— NFFE (@NFFE_Union) May 18, 2020

National Nurses United:

Nurses are "put in the position of either losing our job or losing the ability to care for our children properly. We’re being held up as heroes on one side, but second-class citizens on the other."
-Portia Judson, RN#COVID19 #ProtectNurseshttps://t.co/5g5piWfXBw

— NationalNursesUnited (@NationalNurses) May 18, 2020

National Taxi Workers Alliance:

NYTWA member Mouhamadou Aliyu talks how the pandemic is devastating drivers: “A lot of people I know passed away already,” he said. “One week ago, it was a Haitian driver I know. Then, his son died. I am crying one week ago. Then, I am crying again.” https://t.co/ppcLNTMyKF

— NY Taxi Workers (@NYTWA) May 9, 2020

NFL Players Association:

Thanks for all of your questions for @21DM_ERA + don’t forget to check out Doug’s nonprofit https://t.co/35xE3To98J. #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth pic.twitter.com/56wN05QWu4

— NFLPA (@NFLPA) May 15, 2020

North America's Building Trades Unions:

New week, same friendly reminder to complete your Census and #BeCounted!#LaborCounts #BuildingTradesWhateverItTakes pic.twitter.com/qU0qYynK6m

— The Building Trades (@NABTU) May 18, 2020

Office and Professional Employees:

Your boss should have exactly 0 (!) say in your healthcare. #1u #MedicareForAll https://t.co/kPHxP3qgXV

— OPEIU (@OPEIU) May 18, 2020

Painters and Allied Trades:

We have lost 12 members to the virus already! There is movement for an @OSHA_DOL workplace safety standard in the next stimulus package from Chairman @BobbyScott. At minimum, COVID must be enforced as a workplace hazard.

🚧 Take Action! https://t.co/hfpqCrPfFV 🚧 @NABTU pic.twitter.com/kLaFv0tqq8

— GoIUPAT✊ (@GoIUPAT) May 12, 2020

Plasterers and Cement Masons:

“As doctors, nurses and food workers all adjust their operational protocols to meet COVID-19 challenges, there’s another group of people that is also up and running and making all necessary adjustments: union construction workers.” @BldgAdvantage. https://t.co/jIOdOWm8xB

— OPCMIA International (@opcmiaintl) May 18, 2020

Pride At Work:

Today is international day against homophobia, transphobia and biphobia and we won't stop until every LGBTQ (working) person is free from hate and discrimination. ✊🌈 #IDAHOBIT

— Pride at Work (@PrideatWork) May 17, 2020

Professional Aviation Safety Specialists:

"This hollowing out has been going on for years as a gridlocked Congress preferred continuing resolutions & budgetary caps to hardheaded decisions about vulnerable governmental infrastructure & leaders did little to address structural weaknesses."https://t.co/sExjdn2Khs

— PASS (@PASSNational) May 18, 2020

Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Workers:

Join our Worker Assembly this Thursday for a discussion of important workplace issues and increased health risks during this difficult time.

Learn your rights and how to improve conditions at work through collective action!

Check out the Facebook event: https://t.co/sqeQ4ppWKQ pic.twitter.com/Kjav8KEXjW

— RWDSU (@RWDSU) May 18, 2020

SAG-AFTRA:

Thank you Phyllis George for changing the face of sportscasting. It is your courage and pioneering spirit that has and will continue to shape the sportscasting landscape.https://t.co/ktcw1ZS9cP

— SAG-AFTRA (@sagaftra) May 17, 2020

Seafarers:

#1u #maritime #JonesAct The Jones Act and Globalization In The Age Of COVID-19 https://t.co/7hfFfjhsRU

— Seafarers Union (@SeafarersUnion) May 15, 2020

Solidarity Center:

In #Nepal, #COVID19 crisis has rendered temp workers, internal #migrantworkers & day laborers the most vulnerable based on income, & ability to sustain through the slowdown. Women, esp from lower income groups, also are hard hit. @RepublicaNepal @GEFONThttps://t.co/kK7bx0AiAl

— Solidarity Center (@SolidarityCntr) May 18, 2020

The NewsGuild-CWA:

Since 2004, the U.S. has lost ~1,800 newspapers, many of them small papers outside major cities. That's why, today, we're launching #SaveTheNews, a historic advocacy campaign making the case for why news must be included in future recovery efforts. https://t.co/puWmWUAYem

— NewsGuild-CWA (@newsguild) May 18, 2020

Theatrical Stage Employees:

IATSE hires Epidemiologists to Consult on Reopening Procedures https://t.co/AccAGUal77

— IATSE (@IATSE) May 18, 2020

Transport Workers:

The House-passed #HeroesAct directly addresses the needs of TWU members during the #Pandemic We are calling on the Senate to pass it immediately because it's vital to our country’s efforts to contain & move past #Covid19 & halt the free fall of our economyhttps://t.co/bI340meq00

— TWU (@transportworker) May 18, 2020

Transportation Trades Department:

This expose by @justingeorge at @washingtonpost offers an inside look at the dangers transit workers face as they work through the #COVID19 pandemic. #PPENow

cc @ATUComm @transportworker @TwuSamuelsen @RepPeterDeFazio https://t.co/PY1yRPoJVz

— Transp. Trades Dept. (@TTDAFLCIO) May 18, 2020

UAW:

Secretary-Treasurer Ray Curry lays out the state of our federal courts and what's at stake for American workers in this November's elections. https://t.co/kbG0gddaQf

— UAW (@UAW) May 18, 2020

Union Label and Service Trades Department:

Can Workers' Unions Organize During the Pandemic? https://t.co/qj1yPAVra0

— Union Label Dept. (@ULSTD_AFLCIO) May 12, 2020

Union Veterans Council:

This is what happens when you have a President with nothing but yes men around him.

There was no reason the VA should have and continue to use this politically motivated and unproven drug.

Total failure of leadership from this administration. https://t.co/mZ8HfGKbI2

— Union Veterans Council (@unionveterans) May 17, 2020

UNITE HERE:

When history looks back at our current political moment, it will be artists such as @edelstudio whose work will mark this era.

UNITE HERE is partnering with Edel Rodriguez to ask THE most important question voters will answer about @realDonaldTrump on November 3. #WantMore pic.twitter.com/ts6RzAtqjb

— UNITE HERE (@unitehere) May 12, 2020

United Food and Commercial Workers:

America's grocery workers put themselves in harm's way every day to help feed our families & keep us safe as the #coronavirus outbreak continues.

On @CNN today @UFCW President @Marc_Perrone says it's time for companies to pay these brave workers accordingly. RT if you agree. #1u pic.twitter.com/j2DlQasfyC

— UFCW (@UFCW) May 17, 2020

United Steelworkers:

Meat and poultry workers in the center of a global coronavirus hotspot https://t.co/FUwyigc0vD #USWUnity

— United Steelworkers (@steelworkers) May 18, 2020

United Students Against Sweatshops:

“This is a huge win for garment workers we’re in solidarity with in places such as Indonesia” -USAS International Campaigns Coordinator @ana_organize in Forbes: "Under Armour Follows Rivals, Commits To Paying Garment Makers In Full" https://t.co/dSiVSWmkRU #WorkersOverUnderArmour

— USAS (@USAS) May 13, 2020

United Union of Roofers and Waterproofers:

To prevent falls, learn the best practices for using a ladder here: https://t.co/HQiR2f552r #roofersafety365 pic.twitter.com/Marq06KZtE

— Roofers Union (@roofersunion) May 18, 2020

Utility Workers:

We need your help improving protections for all essential personnel, including utility workers hard at work during this #pandemic.

Make your voice heard as lawmakers prepare further recovery actions to protect workers impacted by #COVID19.https://t.co/bMd3unP6QA pic.twitter.com/hL8WrQJOgK

— UWUA National (@The_UWUA) May 18, 2020

Working America:

Meanwhile, 7 Amazon warehouse workers have died of COVID-19 so far. https://t.co/7UOIfR7lTp

— Working America (@WorkingAmerica) May 18, 2020

Writers Guild of America, East:

“More than 1200 members of the WGA East have signed a petition calling on Congress to pass immediate financial relief for news-gathering organizations, many of which have seen advertising revenues plummet by more than 50% during the coronavirus pandemic.”https://t.co/SI8vx1KBW2

— Writers Guild of America, East (@WGAEast) May 13, 2020 Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 05/15/2020 - 13:02

Labor Radio–Podcast Weekly: Fire Fighters and COVID-19, the Longest Wildcat Strike and More

Fri, 05/15/2020 - 10:59
Labor Radio–Podcast Weekly: Fire Fighters and COVID-19, the Longest Wildcat Strike and More Labor Radio-Podcast Weekly

The latest episode of the Labor Radio-Podcast Weekly features firefighters during COVID-19, the country’s longest wildcat strike, a new show and more. This week’s highlights include:

IAFF Podcast: Hosts Mark Treglio and Doug Stern talk with members of the Fire Fighters health and safety division about how their members are dealing with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic: “Our firefighters and paramedics are used to risking their lives and safety every day when they go to work, but the sheer scope of the virus, combined with the lack of PPE in some communities, creates a very anxiety-provoking situation.”

Working People: Track laborer and writer John Tormey interviews working-class Kentucky artist, writer and radio host Terry Tapp about his latest book, “A Serf’s Journal: The Story of the United States’ Longest Wildcat Strike.”

En Masse: A teaser from our very latest network member, an exciting new podcast called En Masse that’s dedicated to telling “stories of struggle and hope from the working class.”

UCOMM Live: Texas AFL-CIO’s Ed Sills talks about whether COVID-19 will result in more organizing for workers in Texas.

Labor History in 2:00: We find out about the day in 1972 when employees at the Farah Manufacturing Co. went out on strike, launching one of the iconic boycotts of the era. 

Check out all the Labor Radio/Podcast Network shows.

Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 05/15/2020 - 11:59

Tags: Podcast

Worker Safety Must Come First: In the States Roundup

Fri, 05/15/2020 - 09:49
Worker Safety Must Come First: In the States Roundup AFL-CIO

It's time once again to take a look at the ways working people are making progress in the states. Click on any of the links to follow the state federations on Twitter.

California Labor Federation:

#AB3216 is critical legislation that prioritizes worker protections to meet the unprecedented challenges ahead. We must ensure that our North Star in reviving California’s economy is putting working people at the front of our recovery.” - @ArtPulaski 👏#ProtectAllWorkers #1u

— California Labor Federation (@CaliforniaLabor) May 13, 2020

Colorado AFL-CIO:

*TESLA* As there is talks of rolling out the red carpet for Tesla here in Colorado let's remember one fact: Elon Musk and Tesla violated labor laws and denied workers who want the freedom to join together in union a fair shot to do so. 1/3 https://t.co/hemHHCQ3kc

— Colorado AFL-CIO (@AFLCIOCO) May 13, 2020

Connecticut AFL-CIO:

The only reason they got sick is because they went to work. Do the right thing, @GovNedLamont! #1u #COVID19 @AFLCIO https://t.co/caAHWfSFc3

— Connecticut AFL-CIO (@ConnAFLCIO) May 8, 2020

Florida AFL-CIO:

“We have 4 billion dollars in that account for unemployment insurance benefits and the way Florida law is written right now, those benefits can’t get into the pockets of people who need it,” said Dr. Templin.https://t.co/p1mlzFKoes

— Florida AFL-CIO (@FLAFLCIO) May 14, 2020

Iowa Federation of Labor:

Add your name to this petition that will go to the Governor asking for a Pandemic-specific OSHA standard to be put in place immediately. https://t.co/HeEsl2vlMi

— Iowa AFL-CIO (@IowaAFLCIO) May 12, 2020

Massachusetts AFL-CIO:

Join Driving Families Forward on Thursday, May 21st at 6:00pm for a Virtual Town Hall to elevate the voices of essential workers impacted by the current public health crisis! #mapoli #drivingMAforward https://t.co/AsOvADg8Vq

— Massachusetts AFL-CIO (@massaflcio) May 13, 2020

Michigan AFL-CIO:

Our President @RonBieberMI shared his thoughts this morning on the passing of our dear friend Mo Hood III: pic.twitter.com/ElKLs1K3dU

— Michigan AFL-CIO 🏠 (@MIAFLCIO) May 12, 2020

Minnesota AFL-CIO:

Minnesota @AFLCIO President Bill McCarthy & @SEMNLABOR President @pommellawegmann in todays Rochester Post Bulletin: In re-opening, worker safety must come first https://t.co/qVxNnwTPHj #1u #mnleg #StaySafeMN

— Minnesota AFL-CIO (@MNAFLCIO) May 14, 2020

Missouri AFL-CIO:

A top donor to President Trump and the Republican National Committee will be named the new head of the Postal Service, putting a top ally of the president in charge of an agency where Trump has long pressed for major changes in how it handles its business. https://t.co/DVobRjReYD

— Missouri AFL-CIO (@MOAFLCIO) May 9, 2020

Montana AFL-CIO:

Montana AFL-CIO's primary endorsements #mtpol #mtnews https://t.co/ufOBxHcuhz

— Montana AFL-CIO (@MTaflcio) May 13, 2020

New Jersey State AFL-CIO:

If Rutgers wants to salute its heroes, it should help them get a fair contract: AFL-CIO https://t.co/NcsFjiUMwQ

— New Jersey AFL-CIO (@NJAFLCIO) May 12, 2020

New York State AFL-CIO:

#UnionStrong Podcast Ep. 40: Union Construction Sites Ready to Reopen. Construction is one of the first industries to get back up & running. Pat Purcell, of @GNYLECET joins us to talk about what that new normal will be like. https://t.co/rYYWzekslN

— NYSAFLCIO (@NYSAFLCIO) May 13, 2020

North Carolina State AFL-CIO:

#COVID19 and the grossly inadequate response of @NCDOL to the needs of working people during the pandemic underscores how critical it is that we elect @JessicaHolmesNC as Labor Commissioner in November. Learn more about her campaign at https://t.co/3QYfOlT3zH. #ncpol #1u pic.twitter.com/HCFwzhPEF1

— NC State AFL-CIO (@NCStateAFLCIO) May 14, 2020

Ohio AFL-CIO:

Working people – health care professionals, custodians, & all public service workers – are putting their lives at risk. If Congress doesn’t pass state & local aid, these public service workers could be thanked with a pink slip. Click to #FundTheFrontLines https://t.co/aB1NDqMyeE

— Ohio AFL-CIO (@ohioaflcio) May 14, 2020

Oklahoma State AFL-CIO:

pic.twitter.com/IuT5YnBBV8

— Oklahoma AFL-CIO (@OK_AFL_CIO) May 12, 2020

Oregon AFL-CIO:

"Essential employees are not disposable, but we are being treated as such. Large retailers like Fred Meyer are not enforcing recommendations to protect workers.” Join @ufcw555 and call on @OregonGovBrown enforce her order of social distancing #Solidarityhttps://t.co/n3IMj1uhtf

— Oregon AFL-CIO (@OregonAFLCIO) May 14, 2020

Pennsylvania AFL-CIO:

Proud to see our PA Representatives standing up for those working people recently out of a job due to #COVID19. We need investment in our unemployment insurance system. For decades, politicians have neglected this essential function of government. https://t.co/M3DgmSMCuM

— PA AFL-CIO (@PaAFL_CIO) May 14, 2020

Rhode Island AFL-CIO:

To Learn more about this campaign, please visit https://t.co/UzW0Uys3m6 #1U pic.twitter.com/LQvOt1Dwia

— Rhode Island AFL-CIO (@riaflcio) May 14, 2020

Tennessee AFL-CIO Labor Council:

This should not even be a question.

In Tennessee (and as our president outlined in an op-ed last month), a first step that lawmakers could take to do this would be increasing our state's minimum wage. https://t.co/HhmTawX0vY

— Tennessee AFL-CIO (@tnaflcio) May 13, 2020

Texas AFL-CIO:

Essential Workers In Brownsville Worry About Health, While OSHA Lets Employers Set Own Protections https://t.co/8lGRr4Nmiw

— Texas AFL-CIO (@TexasAFLCIO) May 12, 2020

Virginia AFL-CIO:

Safety First: Working People’s Petition to @GovernorVA. The safety of our Commonwealth is at stake. To protect Virginia’s workers and the communities they serve urgent action is needed. Urge Governor Northam to address the safety of the workers. SIGN ON: https://t.co/IZBC7LB1I3

— Virginia AFL-CIO (@Virginia_AFLCIO) May 8, 2020

Washington State Labor Council:

WSLC's Dulce Gutiérrez: "These #EssentialWorkers are keeping our grocery stores stocked so we can feed our families during this crisis. All of us should join them in demanding hazard pay, paid sick leave, and respect on the job." #1u @FUJWashington @AFLCIO https://t.co/HjQJa1lkFc

— WA State AFL-CIO (@WAAFLCIO) May 13, 2020

Wisconsin State AFL-CIO:

Statement on WI Supreme Court Ruling: Reopening of Economy Must Focus on Worker Health and Safety https://t.co/YngExcTDVi

— WI AFL-CIO (@wisaflcio) May 14, 2020 Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 05/15/2020 - 10:49

Service + Solidarity: The Working People Weekly List

Fri, 05/15/2020 - 07:47
Service + Solidarity: The Working People Weekly List AFL-CIO

Every week, we bring you a roundup of the top news and commentary about issues and events important to working families. Here’s the latest edition of the Working People Weekly List.

Service + Solidarity: Meet Michelle: “Michelle Simmons is a letter carrier who lives and works in Grand Island, Nebraska, and is a member of the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC). Grand Island is a COVID-19 hot spot with one of the highest density rates of contagion anywhere in the country.”

Service + Solidarity: Meet Brent Kirby: “Brent Kirby is a musician based in Cleveland and a member of the American Federation of Musicians (AFM) Local 4. In addition to his solo career, Kirby performs with Brent Kirby & His Luck and the Jack Fords, and leads a monthly Gram Parsons revival. Kirby recently performed in a virtual concert series produced by the Cleveland Federation of Musicians Local 4 and the Local 4 Music Fund.”

Tammy Johnson Leads Wyoming’s Labor Movement, Fighting for Struggling Workers and the Unemployed: “With the Wyoming Legislature scheduled to begin an emergency session later this week, Wyoming State AFL-CIO Executive Secretary Tammy Johnson (USW) is taking the lead fighting for workers in her home state. Policymakers are considering a bill that includes three major components: unemployment insurance (UI), workers’ compensation and rent relief. The UI provisions would hold employers harmless as the state provides additional money to cover the increase in UI claims, and the rent relief portion would provide additional eviction protections for tenants.”

Labor Is Pioneering a New Kind of Relief Effort in the Twin Cities: “Scores of workers across America have been laid off through no fault of their own, and still many of them are not eligible for federal benefits during these unprecedented times. In Minnesota’s Twin Cities, the Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation (MRLF) is organizing to provide support to those workers who can’t get the support they need from our federal government.”

A Chuukese Registered Nurse’s Story During #NursesWeek: “Let’s uplift Marina Robinson, a Chuukese registered nurse in Honolulu working in the OB-GYN department. She is proud to bring the idea of aterenges, or family, into her care work. She keeps pregnant people and their families safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

AFSCME: Strong Public Services Needed to Beat Pandemic, Reopen Economy: “AFSCME launched two ads calling on Congress and President Trump to send aid to state and local governments to keep front-line public service workers on the job. AFSCME President Lee Saunders said: ‘Front-line health care workers, corrections officers, home and child care providers, sanitation workers and other public service workers put their lives on the line every day to save ours. America refuses to thank them with pink slips. Public service workers and the services they provide are essential to beating this pandemic and opening the economy.’”

Hoosiers Need Help from Mike Pence, Not a Visit and Photo-Op: “When [Vice President] Mike Pence returns to Indiana on Thursday, he’ll find Hoosiers in the grips of a crisis unlike anything we’ve witnessed in generations. Cases of the coronavirus are climbing, our health care system is being overwhelmed, and countless working people are being forced to choose between our health and a paycheck. We need more than a photo-op. We need help, and we need it now.”

Economy Loses 20.5 Million Jobs in April; Unemployment Jumps to 14.7%: “The U.S. economy lost 20.5 million jobs in April, taking payroll employment back to levels last seen in spring 2011 when the economy was recovering from the Great Recession, and the unemployment rate jumped by a historic amount to 14.7%, according to figures released Friday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The unemployment rate for white males is 12.4%, the largest for white men in the post-World War II era and the first time it has been in double digits since that era.”

Thanking Heroes for National Nurses Week: What Working People Are Doing This Week: “Welcome to our regular feature, a look at what the various AFL-CIO unions and other working family organizations are doing across the country and beyond. The labor movement is big and active—here’s a look at the broad range of activities we’re engaged in this week.”

Asian Pacific American Heritage Month: An EVS Technician’s COVID-19 Story: “Happy Asian Pacific American Heritage Month! Let’s uplift Asian American and Pacific Islander workers this month⁠—those who are on the front lines of COVID-19 and those who are on the front lines of our families and communities.”

If Trump Wants Meat Plants Open, He Should Protect Their Workers: “The United States now has more than a million reported coronavirus cases, by far the most of any country in the world. The health of our nation, physically and economically, depends on the safety of our workers.”

Labor Radio-Podcast Weekly: Saluting Front-Line Workers, Remote Learning and More: “The latest episode of the Labor Radio-Podcast Weekly features a daily salute to front-line workers in the Electchester community of New York, Chicago Teachers tackling remote learning and Richard Trevellick’s fight for the eight-hour workday.”

Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 05/15/2020 - 08:47

Tammy Johnson Leads Wyoming’s Labor Movement, Fighting for Struggling Workers and the Unemployed

Thu, 05/14/2020 - 10:03
Tammy Johnson Leads Wyoming’s Labor Movement, Fighting for Struggling Workers and the Unemployed Wyoming State AFL-CIO

With the Wyoming Legislature scheduled to begin an emergency session later this week, Wyoming State AFL-CIO Executive Secretary Tammy Johnson (USW) is taking the lead fighting for workers in her home state. Policymakers are considering a bill that includes three major components: unemployment insurance (UI), workers’ compensation and rent relief. The UI provisions would hold employers harmless as the state provides additional money to cover the increase in UI claims, and the rent relief portion would provide additional eviction protections for tenants.

However, Johnson and the state federation are working to change the state’s workers’ compensation system so that all front-line workers who get infected will be presumed to have been infected on the job. Currently, most employers are exempted from the state’s workers’ compensation system unless their employees are performing “extra hazardous” jobs. Johnson said legislators were surprised to learn that many grocery store workers in Wyoming would not be eligible for compensation under the proposed legislation.

“We have to have some kind of protection in place for workers,” she explained. “If they don’t have health care because their hours have been cut to part time and they can’t take unemployment because there’s work available, then they’ll have to go to work sick. You would not want sick grocery store workers to be in the stores.”

Johnson was also appointed by Gov. Mark Gordon to be on the Business and Financial Sector Task Force that is providing policy recommendations for reopening Wyoming’s economy. She said that one of the local unions she has helped is United Steelworkers (USW) Local 13214, whose members mine soda ash. Working with her colleagues on the task force and the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services, she helped ensure that those USW members who were placed on furlough wouldn’t be penalized by the UI system for drawing on their pensions or for taking a “voluntary” furlough. “The challenge going forward is to educate everyone that all workers contributed to these systems and we have to modernize thinking about compensation packages,” she said.

“The backbone of Wyoming is exposed right now. Big corporations are keeping us in the shade, but it’s the workers who keep these companies up and running,” Johnson explained. “Companies may leave, but the workers are still going to be here, and they are the people who make up our communities....COVID-19 has made it clear where the strength in our economy is: It’s with the workers.”

Kenneth Quinnell Thu, 05/14/2020 - 11:03

Tags: COVID-19

Service + Solidarity: Meet Michelle

Thu, 05/14/2020 - 09:36
Service + Solidarity: Meet Michelle

Michelle Simmons is a letter carrier who lives and works in Grand Island, Nebraska, and is a member of the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC). Grand Island is a COVID-19 hot spot with one of the highest density rates of contagion anywhere in the country. 

She speaks here about what it feels like to be considered "essential."

Kenneth Quinnell Thu, 05/14/2020 - 10:36

Tags: COVID-19

Labor Is Pioneering a New Kind of Relief Effort in the Twin Cities

Wed, 05/13/2020 - 13:47
Labor Is Pioneering a New Kind of Relief Effort in the Twin Cities UFCW

Scores of workers across America have been laid off through no fault of their own, and still many of them are not eligible for federal benefits during these unprecedented times. In Minnesota’s Twin Cities, the Minneapolis Regional Labor Federation (MRLF) is organizing to provide support to those workers who can’t get the support they need from our federal government.

Led by President Chelsie Glaubitz Gabiou (UFCW), the MRLF is pioneering a new kind of initiative focused on filling that gap. The Twin Cities Hospitality Relief Effort is specifically designed to help laid-off hospitality workers who are being left behind. The labor federation is giving direct one-on-one assistance to dozens of these workers who need immediate help with health care, housing and money to survive.

“A lot of hospitality workers are not eligible for government assistance for a number of reasons: they receive much of their income from tips, they have families with mixed immigration status, they received a combination of wages and 1099 forms, or they worked for many different employers over the course of the year,” Glaubitz Gabiou explained. “These workers come from an industry that was the first to shut down, and they have a very long recovery ahead.”

The MRLF has 16 people trained to provide navigation services, and they are in place to keep the relief effort going. The navigators are doing direct outreach to those who need help the most, and they interact with community partners and government agencies to provide tailored support for each individual. They are a mix of union organizers, laid-off workers and labor federation staff, and many of them are bilingual. Their conversations with the people receiving help also has an organizing component, as the labor federation is promoting union values to these laid-off workers.

“The way that this team of front-line workers is coming together to take care of other workers in this industry is inspiring,” Glaubitz Gabiou said. “They’re helping people negotiate payment plans with their landlords, get access to active food resources and pharmaceuticals, and much more.” She pointed out that they have helped more than 150 laid-off workers and their families—90% of whom do not have access to unemployment insurance benefits.

The MRLF’s Twin Cities Hospitality Relief Effort is operating in close collaboration with its affiliates, including UNITE HERE Local 17, Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) Local 13 and the Restaurant Opportunities Centers United. The initiative is receiving financial support from the LIFT Fund, the city of Minneapolis, Ramsey County, Minnesota, the Greater Twin Cities United Way, the Minnesota Nurses Association-NNU and UNITE HERE. The coalition recently held an online bingo tournament that raised nearly $5,000. And this funding is being used to support the relief effort and provide $200 cash grants to those laid-off workers who meet minimum standards.

“We have to keep fighting and scraping for people to take seriously the state that all workers are in,” Glaubitz Gabiou said. “It’s not just about surviving right now; we’re working to make sure we recover more resilient in the future.”

Kenneth Quinnell Wed, 05/13/2020 - 14:47

Tags: Community Service

A Chuukese Registered Nurse’s Story During #NursesWeek

Tue, 05/12/2020 - 09:09
A Chuukese Registered Nurse’s Story During #NursesWeek

Let’s uplift Marina Robinson, a Chuukese registered nurse in Honolulu working in the OB-GYN department. She is proud to bring the idea of aterenges, or family, into her care work. She keeps pregnant people and their families safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Like so many others, Robinson is concerned that worker protections are not being prioritized in the nation’s response. Her concerns are heightened because of the high number of essential workers and the prevalence of existing chronic health conditions in Pacific Islander communities. Some states and counties are beginning to report that Pacific Islanders are disproportionately affected by COVID-19, including California and Nevada. Our society’s inequities are especially revealed during this pandemic. 

That’s why we are fighting for major changes that will bring us through the COVID-19 health crisis as safe as possible and build strong and prepared communities for the future.

Join us to protect essential workers.

Kenneth Quinnell Tue, 05/12/2020 - 10:09

Tags: APALA, COVID-19

Service + Solidarity: Meet Brent Kirby

Mon, 05/11/2020 - 10:06
Service + Solidarity: Meet Brent Kirby

Brent Kirby is a musician based in Cleveland and a member of the American Federation of Musicians (AFM) Local 4. In addition to his solo career, Kirby performs with Brent Kirby & His Luck and the Jack Fords and leads a monthly Gram Parsons revival. Kirby recently performed in a virtual concert series produced by the Cleveland Federation of Musicians Local 4 and the Local 4 Music Fund.

These concerts are part of a fundraiser for the Musicians’ Relief Fund, a fund working to assist northeast Ohio musicians who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. All donations received by the Local 4 Music Fund will go toward the Musicians’ Relief Fund and to the assistance of our cultural community.

Donate here: go.aflcio.org/afm.

Kenneth Quinnell Mon, 05/11/2020 - 11:06

Tags: COVID-19

AFSCME: Strong Public Services Needed to Beat Pandemic, Reopen Economy

Mon, 05/11/2020 - 07:11
AFSCME: Strong Public Services Needed to Beat Pandemic, Reopen Economy

AFSCME launched two ads calling on Congress and President Trump to send aid to state and local governments to keep front-line public service workers on the job. AFSCME President Lee Saunders said: "Front-line health care workers, corrections officers, home and child care providers, sanitation workers and other public service workers put their lives on the line every day to save ours. America refuses to thank them with pink slips. Public service workers and the services they provide are essential to beating this pandemic and opening the economy."

Kenneth Quinnell Mon, 05/11/2020 - 08:11

Hoosiers Need Help from Mike Pence, Not a Visit and Photo-Op

Fri, 05/08/2020 - 14:19
Hoosiers Need Help from Mike Pence, Not a Visit and Photo-Op Indiana AFL-CIO

Brett Voorhies (USW) is president of the Indiana State AFL-CIO, a federation of more than 400 local unions representing nearly 300,000 working Hoosiers.

When [Vice President] Mike Pence returns to Indiana on Thursday, he’ll find Hoosiers in the grips of a crisis unlike anything we’ve witnessed in generations. Cases of the coronavirus are climbing, our health care system is being overwhelmed and countless working people are being forced to choose between our health and a paycheck.

We need more than a photo-op. We need help, and we need it now.

Unions are working to empower and protect those in harm’s way, but we should not have to do this alone. Our government must do its part to protect working people from infectious diseases. 

But for months, President Donald Trump has stood in the way of the full-scale federal response that this moment demands. He ignored his own advisers, downplayed the virus, and wasted precious time that could have been used to prepare for the coming pandemic. He did not heed the labor movement’s early call for action and did not act quickly to secure testing, workplace plans and protective equipment. And as the crisis has worn on, he’s broken promise after promise.

In February, Trump suggested that the virus wouldn’t spread beyond 15 U.S. cases. Today, the United States has suffered more coronavirus deaths than any country in the world—including nearly 1,000 Hoosiers.

Once the crisis was too devastating to ignore, the Trump administration promised to deliver 27 million tests by the end of March. When that deadline arrived, they had fulfilled less than 4% of their own goal.

That national failure is hurting us here in Indiana. Earlier this month, the state health commissioner announced a goal of processing 6,300 tests per day, but equipment shortages have limited us to just half that rate. Across the state, Hoosiers are in the dark about our own status as well as the severity of the outbreak in our communities. 

That lack of information is even more dangerous given working Hoosiers’ inability to stay safe on the job. Nearly a month ago, the state health department announced that the Trump administration would not send any additional protective equipment to Indiana. Since then, Hoosiers have been forced to scramble for donated—or even homemade—supplies.

Months into this pandemic, health care workers across Indiana are still being forced to ration gloves, reuse masks, and wear garbage bags in place of protective garments. It’s a travesty of historic proportions. At a time when our leaders are asking everything of working people—from punishing hours to emotional and physical exhaustion—the very least they can do is keep us safe. 

This White House isn’t interested in putting the needs of working people ahead of political self-preservation. When pushed to distribute emergency supplies, Trump told reporters he wasn’t interested: “We’re not a shipping clerk.”

His son-in-law’s response was even more chilling: “It’s supposed to be our stockpile.”

That kind of selfishness is putting Hoosiers’ lives in danger. This virus doesn’t care about politics or party. It doesn’t care about news cycles or petty spats. It’s coming for all of us, and we’ll only be able to fight back if we work together.

Working people have always known that we’re stronger when we act collectively. More than ever, this is a time for our country to rally behind a cause that affects each and every one of us. To do that, we need a federal government focused on delivering results—not photo-ops.

This op-ed originally appeared at IndyStar.

Kenneth Quinnell Fri, 05/08/2020 - 15:19

Tags: COVID-19

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